En-ROADS is fun (and depressing) to explore. Spoiler alert: the magnitude of the combined actions needed to keep warming below 1.5 degrees Celsius is quickly becoming evident. There is no one-size-fits-all solution. Users can grasp any combination of scenarios, from pricing carbon to reducing deforestation to electric vehicles to ending fossil fuel subsidies, and instantly visualize the impact of these solutions on outcomes like as future warming and sea level rise.
Wasn’t the temperature rise quite kept below 1.5 degrees Celsius, or even 2 degrees Celsius? Try again, except to replace electric vehicles with heavily subsidized renewables, or reduce economic or population growth. En-ROADS outlines which policies and strategies are likely to have the greatest impact. Run the simulation on your own, polish the climate strategies, or throw a party and invite your friends to debate the strategies world leaders should prioritize while you shout real-world negotiations on the news broadcasts.
With En-ROADS, you can visualize the area lost due to sea level rise and explore global flood risk maps. You can identify which species are losing their range due to climate change, and where. You can calculate estimated decreases in crop yields or increased deaths resulting from higher temperatures. This is important in areas that have never needed air conditioning and are seeing record heat-related deaths, such as the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia.
Role-play with your own UN climate summit
If you’re more interested in the nuances of high-stakes negotiations and climate justice, check out C-ROADS. Individuals can run the simulation online, but it is more fun to play the role of a mock United Nations climate summit. Climate Interactive provides resources and animation materials for accommodation. Groups can represent developed and developing countries in broad categories, or if you have more players, you can play a six-region game and represent US, EU, China, India , other developed countries and other developing countries. You can also add representation for climate activists, fossil fuel lobbyists, the press, and the US Climate Alliance.
My college students participate in simulations of UN climate negotiations to help them understand the complexities of real-world negotiations and gain a more tangible understanding of the impacts of possible climate actions. Student groups are given guidance on the actual climate or financial impacts their country or stakeholder group faces and what they need for negotiations, and are tasked with coming up with climate solutions that their group is ready to adopt. .
To make the role-play more realistic, students representing low-lying island nations should sit on the floor at the back of the room while students representing wealthy business groups or developed countries are given a seat. superior with fancy chairs, snacks and special treatment in front of the class.
It’s inspiring to see my students embrace their assigned country or stakeholder group. They would have secret conversations in the hallways, bribe other groups, passionately plead their cause in front of the whole class, do whatever they can to defend their proposals or the urgency of their situation. Some have chosen to withdraw from the negotiations. I entered their proposals into the C-ROADS climate simulator, and the tool immediately calculated whether the proposals were sufficient to keep the warming below 1.5 or 2 degrees Celsius. When cumulative engagements failed to keep warming below 2 degrees Celsius (which they always did), students representing island nations were covered with a tarp to represent their islands no longer being habitable due to the rise in sea level.